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Vol. XV No. 20
Friday May 18 - May 24, 2007

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Updated every Friday
by Saichon Paewsoongnern

 

OUR COMMUNITY
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]: 

Diana Group presents 172,000 baht in scholarships to children of staff members

PC Classic committee donates educational equipment for the development of wayward children’s education

Combined exhibition at Gallery Opium reveals two different approaches to art

Everything you ever wanted to know about registering births, deaths, marriages, divorces, wills and testaments, house papers and id cards…but were afraid to ask

Italy comes to Mantra

Bartenders compete for place in world Bacardi-Martini championships

Diana Group presents 172,000 baht in scholarships to children of staff members

It was indeed a happy day for both the donors and the receivers as everyone gathers for a group photograph.

Narisa Nitikarn
The Diana Group on May 9 presented almost 172,000 baht in scholarships to the children of staff members.
The ceremony took place at the Diana Garden Resort in North Pattaya, with Wachira Netnoi, judge at Pattaya Provincial Court presiding, and managing director of the Diana Group Sophin Thappajug, who is also head of the associate judges at the Chonburi Juvenile and Family Court, on hand to welcome the students who were receiving their study grants.
Paga Soontornwat, chairman of the scholarships project, said the Diana Group presents the grants each year, this being the 19th consecutive year. This year the sum has been increased by 300 baht per scholarship. In total, 72 children of Diana Group staff members received the grants, and for the first time five children of members of the media also received grants.
The 77 scholarships were divided amongst different levels of class. Kindergarten scholarships were valued at 2,300 baht, those for primary classes 1-4 and 5-6 at 2,600 baht, vocational college at 3,200 baht, and bachelor degree classes at 3,500 baht. The children of media personnel were divided into two class levels, namely 1,000 baht for kindergarten and 1,200 baht for primary school. A total of 171,983 baht was paid in scholarships.
Sophin said that the Thai economy is not good at the moment, hence the increase of 300 baht per scholarship and the decision to add grants for bachelor degree students and members of the media, the latter having been supportive of the Diana Group.
“We are the same family, and we have to assist each other, even though the assistance is minor,” Sophin told students and their parents.
Miss Chanatcha Ngernopas, aged nine years, who is in primary school class 4 at Banrodfai School and is the daughter of Mrs Siriporn Ngernopas, 34-year-old, staff member of the Diana Group, also addressed the gathering. “I received a scholarship for my fourth year, and felt happy to receive it,” she said. “I intend to learn better, and thank the Diana Group for giving me an opportunity.”
Siriporn said she has worked at the Diana Group for four years, and has received scholarships from them since her daughter has been studying in primary class 1. This significantly relieves the burden of fees and school supplies. The life of the family is becoming better, she said. “I feel happy the hotel is assisting, and I love Diana and I will work at the Diana Group forever,” she added.


PC Classic committee donates educational equipment for the development of wayward children’s education

(l-r) Jon Tellefsen, Pichet Kritsanapan, Graham Hunt-Crowley, Worasith Apichartchote, Chief Judge of the Chonburi Family and Juvenile Court, Judy Hoppe, Peter Malhotra, Panga Vathanakul, MD of the Royal Cliff Beach Resort, Alexander Haeusler and Peter Cummins at the presentation.

Ariyawat Nuamsawat
The Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya in cooperation with the Pattaya Mail PC Classic Royal Cliff Beach Resort International Regatta presented electronic educational equipment to the Chonburi Family and Juvenile Court for use in teaching and training children detained at the court’s remand home.
The 13th PC Classic was held on March 24, this year and as in previous years the proceeds raised from this event have been donated to worthwhile projects for children under the care of Rotary Clubs in Thailand.
The organizing committee led by Judy Hoppe and members of the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya met on May 8 at the Royal Cliff Beach Resort where the projector and screen were presented to Worasith Apichartchote, chief justice of the Chonburi Family and Juvenile Court, and Pichet Kritsanapan the court’s director.
Panga Wantanakul, managing director of the Royal Cliff Beach Resort, said that Chonburi Family and Juvenile Court regularly made educational presentations to various associations and educational institutes, telling them about the serious problems of our society and how they intended to solve some of them, especially for the children. These learning tools would be of great use in enhancing these seminars.
Chief Justice Worasith said that in all of Thailand, Chonburi Province has the most cases involving children. Part of the Family and Juvenile Court’s role is to give education and advice to families, associations and schools to prevent their children from committing crimes and to deter repeat offenders.
The PC Classic committee thanks all our sponsors for your kind support and we will continue to help those in need with your continued support.


Combined exhibition at Gallery Opium reveals two different approaches to art

Alan Kirkland-Roath (2nd left) and Linda Lyen (right) pose with Pat Savage (left) and Victoire Meyer (2nd right) at the opening of the new exhibition.

Peter Nordhues
Gallery Opium continues with its very active exhibitions schedule with the opening of A Propos 2550, a joint exhibit by Victoire Meyer of Switzerland and Pat Savage of England.
Despite stormy weather, Alan Kirkland-Roath welcomed a large number of visitors to the opening on May 5.

Down our Road - linol cut by Pat Savage.
The two lady artists, who both moved to Pattaya last September and who both gave up distinguished careers to become artists, have a very different approach to art.
Pat Savage studied at London’s Goldsmiths College School of Art and Royal College of Art Sculpture School. Initially she worked as a sculptress, but now she has discovered print and batik. Her works include copper sheet prints, linocut prints and mono prints, and her focus tends to be on the relationship between nature and mankind. Savage’s artworks are published in regular books as well as schoolbooks and hymnbooks. Many of her pieces are presented in arts centers or are privately owned by people in England, Australia, the US, France and Switzerland.

Atmosphere I - Mixed Media byVictoire Meyer.
Victoire Meyer graduated in enamel works at Geneva’s Ecole des Arts Décoratifs, and she has been awarded the prestigious Etienne-Dufour prize. Her works have been displayed at numerous exhibitions, mostly in Switzerland and France. At the beginning of her career, Meyer worked for renowned watchmakers like Piaget and Baume & Mercier and also served as a jewelry designer.
Later, as she felt there wasn’t enough scope in her work for artistry, she turned towards painting. Meyer now almost exclusively paints abstract works. In her pieces, she colorfully displays the positive and emotional messages from her fantasy world, mostly using the primary colors red and yellow as well as cobalt blue.
A Propos 2550 is the inaugural exhibition in Pattaya for both artists, and all works are on sale.


Everything you ever wanted to know about registering births, deaths, marriages, divorces, wills and testaments, house papers and id cards…but were afraid to ask

Alan Sherratt
The Pattaya City Expats Club (PCEC) at their meeting on the Sunday 6th May at Henry J. Bean’s were given plenty of information regarding the government services provided by the Nai Amphur’s (District chief’s) Office. These of course are only a small part of the work and role of the Nai Amphoe and his office.

Drew Noyes speaks to Roger about the simplicity of the Thai administration system.

Drew Noyes, no stranger to the PCEC, was both MC and main speaker and, with the aid of a computer presentation, led the members through the essentials of a number of services provided by the district office and other government offices.. Having surprised everyone with a few facts and figures such as in an area of 727 Sq. Km the 77,000 registered residents only gives a population density of 100 people per square kilometre. These of course are only registered people; Khun Sermsak suggested that the more likely number of people living here was around 500,000.
That being so Drew explained how a Thai partner could register their new address of residence. The person must register within 15 days of relocating by presenting a copy of the housebook to the district office in Banglamung together with their ID card and a letter giving power of attorney from the owner of the residence to be put on the housebook. The fee for this service was the mind-blowing 5 baht! It was pointed out that there is now a service available to transfer the address via an automated system. This only takes 15 minutes assuming the addresses are on the database and costs 10 baht! Any Thai failing to make these changes of address within 15 days can incur a fine of 1000 baht.
For the Foreigner or Thai it is essential to register births and deaths. For births, either parent can register the birth providing the house registration book, ID of the informant and the birth certificate from the hospital are presented within 15 days. Again failure to do so will incur a 1000 baht fine. With regard to death it is slightly different. If someone dies in their home then the owner of the house or the person who found the body must notify the authorities within 24 hours. If someone dies outside the home e.g. through accident, then it is the first person who found the body – which might explain the reluctance of people wishing to get involved!
Marriages must be registered to make them legal no matter what previous ceremonies have been held. Copy of the house registration book, copy of passport or ID, a letter of assurance from the embassy that the people are free to marry. Translation for the Nai Amphur’s office. Again a mere 200 baht for this service.
Assuming things do not go the way they were planned and the marriage breaks down it is possible to go to the Nai Amphur’s office and obtain a writ of divorce. If the two parties are agreed then it can be done there and then if that is not the case then it could take as long as a couple of days to obtain the divorce. ID/passport, marriage certificate and a letter of divorce or agreement of divorce from the court are necessary.
For those not blessed with children or those who wish to adopt, an ID card and letter of approval authorizing the adoption of the child from the agency of adoption are needed.
For Thais wishing to make a will there are in fact 5 types referred to as 1. Normal; 2.Self Written; 3. Official wills written at the district office; 4 undisclosed (secret) wills not open to the pubic till death and 5.verbal (dictated) wills.
For foreigners these can be in English or Thai. Living wills are perfectly legit here and the contents will be honoured.
For those contemplating the setting up of a bar or place of entertainment again the essential piece of paper is the house registration book of the premises. Whether it is within the entertainment zone basically between Beach Road and Third Road and South Pattaya and North Pattaya Roads and the short stretch of Naklua Road, then an entertainment licence can be granted. But of course all this is in a constant state of flux and even the Nai Amphur himself has said that this is one of the most difficult parts of his decision-making! All other licences for liquor etc. have to be acquired from Sri Racha at the 6th floor of the Laem Thong Building and no matter when the licence is granted they all terminate at the end of December each year!
To round off the session Drew explained the Land ownership certificate and how it provided proof of ownership without “searches”. A suggestion made was that by putting a mortgage or lease on the land then it will stop anyone from selling it without your consent and hang on to your deed! Sounds sensible.
For more detailed information go to the PCEC website www. pattayacityexpatsclub.com.


Italy comes to Mantra

By Miss Terry Diner
Wine dinners have been done by a few restaurants in Pattaya, but in true Mantra style, when this restaurant put on a wine dinner, they dared to be different. Rather than lecturns and podiums with knowledgeable people expounding, Mantra had the knowledgeable people visiting the tables to personally give the winers and diners the fruits of his knowledge.

Davide Vacciotti explaining the vintages to Judy Hoppe.
The April dinner was billed as an Italian Wine Exploration, and Davide Vacchiotti, the Export Manager of the Bangkok based Italian Fine Wines company was on hand to discuss the wines on a one to one basis. Also heavily involved was the Mantra Executive Chef Khun Supachai, who had chosen a menu to complement the Italian tipple.
After meeting friends in the wonderful Arabian Nights cocktail bar area, we were given liberal quantities of a nice Prosecco Fantinel Veneto Friuli. This was a light sparkler and certainly helped break the ice!
We entered the restaurant proper and began with the Hamchi Carpaccio, which was lifted by some avocado, all washed down with a Batasiolo Chardonnay Morino 2005 from the Piedmont region of Italy. These two did go well together and took us through to the next course which was a very large portion of grilled goose liver with a forest mushroom ragout, taken with an Aglianico Vesevo, 2005. The grapes, Davide told me, were grown in the black volcanic soil, and the wine had a fresh and fruity character.
Main course was charcoal grilled double lamb chops on a garlic clove gratin. Wonderful! With this course we drank a Chianti Classico Riserva Castello di Volpaia 2003. For me, this was the wine of the evening, and only 200,000 bottles escape into the public arena each year, said Davide.
The dinner moved on to a Taleggio cheese platter with a Morellino di Scansano, Cantine Leonardo da Vinci 2004, an interesting wine which will apparently be given DOC classification next year.
The final dish, a dessert with caramelized fruits, baked raspberry spring rolls and hazelnut ice cream was paired with a Moscato d’Asti, Bosc d’ la Rei 2006, again from Piedmont. This was your typical sweet dessert wine, but notable for the fact that fermentation is stopped early in the production of the wine, giving an end result of only 5.5 percent alcohol.
The next Mantra Wine Dinner will feature South African wines and will be in July. Watch this space for further details!


Bartenders compete for place in world Bacardi-Martini championships

The four finalists get ready for the final round in Bangkok.

Vimolrat Singnikorn
Four bartenders from the Eastern region will shortly be traveling to Bangkok for the finals that will decide who is to represent Thailand in the world bartender championships to be held in Italy later this year.
On April 26, Bacardi (Thailand) Co Ltd staged the Bacardi-Martini Grand Prix 2007 Thailand Championship at Hard Rock Hotel Pattaya, to pick the best bartender in Eastern Thailand. Taking part were 15 bartenders from hotels in the Eastern region. Overall winner was Panya Inkhongngam from Dusit Resort Pattaya, who won 5,000 baht and a place in the national finals. Three runners-up, Saksiri Thongdonsonht, Pongsah Amplod and Yuttavanit Munkong, also went forward to the finals.
The event to be held on May 22 at the Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok, will see 20 bartenders from the North, East, South and Central regions in competition, with just one going forward as Thailand’s representative at the world contest in Turin, Italy. The winner will receive a roundtrip ticket to Italy with accommodation and pocket money, totaling more than 100,000 baht.
Tananchai Sirisri, who is responsible for Bacardi Superior products at Bacardi (Thailand) Co said this is the fourth time the Bacardi-Martini Grand Prix Thailand Championships have been held. The past three have all been successful in terms of support and quality of competitors, and each year the number of participants has increased.
“The bartender contest is carried out to international standards,” said Tanachai. “The members of the judging committee are qualified people from many fields who have the experience, knowledge and understanding to judge the three main categories of taste, technique, and appearance.”
The world championships have been held every year for 41 years, and are organized by Bacardi-Martini Ltd and the International Bartender Association. The event is designed to increase standards amongst the world’s bartenders.



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